The sound of someone kicking in your back door in the middle of the night is not a good thing. It signals an invasion of some sort, and it’s not likely to end well for someone. It’s a message you certainly don’t want to ignore.
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Last night Keon Washington decided he wanted more stuff. So in the wee hours of the morning he armed himself with a large butcher knife and kicked in the back door of a nearby house intending to take what he wanted. Mike, the homeowner, was awakened by the sound of the shattering door. There were several things Mike DIDN’T do. First of all, he didn’t ignore the noise and decide to go back to sleep. Neither did he ask the intruder to be more quiet and stop his disturbing sounds. What Mike DID do was take appropriate action right away. He confronted the burglar. He warned him repeatedly to stop and leave or he would be shot. Keon Washington had a knife, and he didn’t believe Mike really had a gun. He was wrong. He got shot.
Two immediate lessons come to mind. The first one is never bring a knife to a gun fight. The second one is that some warnings ought to be heeded.
Today’s verse is actually warning with a bit of a similar lesson, and says TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DON’T HARDEN YOUR HEARTS.
God speaks. He does! He speaks through a lot of different things, but God’s goal at this step of His communication is similar to Mike’s first goal in his. God wants us to pay attention and change our direction. God wants us to know there are consequences for continuing our present course of action, and they are not going to be pleasant. They may, in fact, be life threatening.
At some point in our lives, you and I have been like Keon Washington. You may still be there, or you likely know someone who is. Washington was unaware how close he was to making the final choices of his life. He was brazenly pushing forward thinking that he was the one in control. Even though he was on someone else’s turf, he was convinced that he had what it took to take care of himself. Thankfully for Washington, Mike was not only well armed but he was an excellent shot. So our burglar ended up in the hospital instead of the morgue.
If Keon Washington LISTENS and LEARNS from this experience, he will decide to amend his ways and leave his life of crime. If he hardens his heart, his next crime may be his last. Is God speaking to Keon Washington in this? I believe so. God’s heart of grace always desires sinners to come to repentance and turn to Him. God prefers mercy to judgement, forgiveness to punishment. His Spirit of Truth guides us in all truth. God lovingly instructs us and teaches us in the way we should go. He says He will counsel you, and keep His my eye upon you. He loves to see you and I turn around and got the right way. But He also warns us not to be like a horse or a mule, without understanding, which must be curbed with bit and bridle, or it will not stay where it is supposed to be.
God already knows the lesson that Keon Washington learned from Mike. There’s a time for warnings and pleas to listen and turn around. And, like Mike, God makes those pleas to us repeatedly. But there comes a time when the pleading stops and the action starts. There are consequences to not listening to God. They are not going to be pleasant. They are, in fact, life threatening.
TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DON’T HARDEN YOUR HEARTS. He wants you to listen to His voice.
Did you hear that ??